It’s All The Same God

Have you ever had this said to you? I have, lot’s of times, when I was still struggling with my religious beliefs, or lack thereof. It was usually in the context of a conversation about comparative religions, and which religion was the correct one. Someone would point out that those Muslims, or those Hindus or those Jews worshiped a different god than I did, to which someone else would say (indeed, many times I would say it) “It doesn’t matter. There’s only one God. It’s all the Same God”. That was supposed to smooth things over, make us all nicey-nice.

The point of this little tidbit of rationalization is an acknowledgment that there are different gods, worshiped by different cultures in different parts of the world, but in the end, while they may all give Him a different name, he’s still the same guy. He’s God (Yahweh, Allah, Vishnu, etc). It’s not so much that there are competing gods, just competing cultures vying for the naming rights.

But you know, they’re right, come to think about it. There really is one god. It doesn’t matter which culture it arises from, be it an ancient, pagan religion that we have no record of, localized among a tribe of Neanderthals 50,000 years ago, or the Christian god of the Catholic Church, and its many protestant offshoots. It’s still the same, one true god. That god was created in the minds of man. It was created as a response to questions and mysteries of the times, to reassure men that they were not alone in the world, that there was a higher being out there somewhere who kept a watchful eye on them, and who protected them in bad times and nurtured the good times, as long as they performed the right rituals and said the right prayers. That same god was created by different men in different cultures at different times, for the same reasons.

So in that respect, it is all the same god.

10 thoughts on “It’s All The Same God

  1. Interesting take on the phrase. I once asked my Hindu friend, who believes they’re all the same god, whether that ancient Aztec god that demands human sacrifice, I forget the name, was also the same god. As far as I remember he just made a joke to avoid the question. And frankly I don’t see why anyone would want their ‘peaceful, friendly, all loving god to be connected to the Abrahamic faiths. Their god is always pissed off about something.

  2. I’m stealing that Aztec question. Let me know about royalties. 🙂

    Actually, I dashed off the post quickly on Friday, and I wanted to say more, but forgot in the process of writing. One thing I intended to say is what you pointed out here, which is that the phrase “They’re all the same god” is an issue avoidance mechanism.

    When it’s pointed out that monotheism makes no sense when there are so many competing monotheistic gods, this is the way we avoid that glaring inconsistency. Your question is good, because it doesn’t allow avoidance.

  3. Well, I think we can start the royalties at about £5 a use. That’s fair I should say 😉 .

    It’s a particularly annoying way for them to avoid the question, because it’s so blatantly false. If they’re all the same, why do you worship in your specific church? Why not the mosque or the synagogue? Why all the different commands from the ‘same’ god? And why call it a different religion, if it’s all the ‘same’ god? Madness, I say.

  4. It’s definately an issue avoidance mechanism more than words that are truly believed by those that argue in favor of religion. “It’s all the same God” usually accompanies the argument that most of the world’s populations/every world culture experiences organized religious belief.

    They include the “all the same God” premise since it justifies the obvious criticism of the argument for popularity which points out that each religion has different deities (some have *no* deities!).

    But what the two arguments fail to consider is that the gods of many religions are contradictory in their qualities and characteristics. Polytheistic religions have gods of evil as well as good.

  5. There is only one God. That God send his son Jesus Christ to the world not to condemn the world but to save the world through Jesus Christ. The Scripture said, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16

    • Sorry Julius, I can’t actually tell, are you a sentient human being or a parrot who’s been taught to type?

    • Gee, thanks for sharing that bit of scriptural cow dung, Julius. None of us ignorant atheists had ever heard or read it before. Since you put it that way, though, we’ll get right on the repenting, believing and being saved business right away. Our gratitude to you is unending, eternal and boundless.

  6. Thanks Julius! I guess I need to rethink my atheism after all! LOL!

    If there are any intelligent beings on other planets in the universe, does the sacrifice of Jesus apply to them as well?

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